Monday, December 12, 2005

Small amounts of ink wasted

The unabashedly conservative Star-Tribune columnist Katherine Kersten strikes again with her dislike for houses of higher learning.

With a round-about way of getting to the point, the columnist who would stick out like a sore thumb at any newspaper pens a column belittling the University of Minnesota law school due to the fact that the school has joined an organization of other colleges and universities whose common objective is to bar Army recruiters from trolling the campuses looking for recruits.

In her mind the recruiters have every right to be there due to the fact that the university receives taxpayer funding. The sticking point as I see it is that the universities are also funded by tuition paid by students. Regardless of how the money is obtained to fund the schools, the barring of military recruiters should play no part in how the bills are paid.

The University of Minnesota has numerous programs which could have the same logic applied to them. The stereotype is that the majority of basketball or football players are of African-American descent. Did she try to pick apart something with a race issue surrounding it? Nope. She used her token column to point out that anyone who isn't open to allowing military recruiters to set up a booth and recruit students at a place where taxpayers do kick in a portion of the funds to keep the doors open is un-American.

Being the friend of a young man who recently returned from duty in Iraq and is now, get this, an Army National Guard recruiter, I can see the value of our military but their place for recruiting is, as it should be, at festivals and such where they pitch a tent and hawk their wares as any other carnival-type folk do. Trust me, the last thing on the minds of a majority of college students is joining the military and risking their lives in a land where they are unwanted to pay for a couple of college credits.

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